Friday, 31 May 2019

Lolita Blogpost Roundup: May 2019

With my personal life being a little less hectic right now, I've really enjoyed the other aspect of blogging more - getting to read other people's posts! Here are some of my favourites from the last month ^__^

Lolita Blog Carnival : The Importance Of Lolita Fashion Publications & Their Impact from Crimson Reflections 
I'm not much of a one for magazines and such, so posts like this (and the blogger's collection!) are really insightful and impressive.

The Ultimate Guide to Sewing Waistbands from A Pair & A Spare
First things first - this is not a lolita specific post. But you need to know how to sew a good waistband if you're into handmade lolita, so it seemed like a worthwhile thing to share regardless. 

My Favourite Things In Oldschool Lolita from Cynical  Neo-Princessism
I mean, this list pretty much covers everything, and I agree with it all.

AYWI30C #1 - Your Trademark Look from Cupcakes and Unicorns
How could I not feature this post? Not only is she doing my prompt challenge (which I still haven't even finished, ahem) but she's doing worn and flatlay version of the coords? And lookbook videos?!? I am so impressed and really looking forward to seeing everything else she does for this series!

There didn't seem to be as many blogs active this month, and I read more than one great post from many of the people posted here so if you don't follow them already I heartily suggest that you do!

Monday, 27 May 2019

Bodyline's place in the lolita community

When I got into lolita in 2012 , we talked about Bodyline a lot. We wore Bodyline a lot – nearly everyone had at least a few pieces from there, be it shoes or some cheap dresses. But with the rise of Taobao, the saturation of the second-hand market, and the general ease of online ordering, Bodyline almost feels like a relic of the early 2010s. Is there even still a place for Bodyline as lolita fashion moves towards 2020?

Do you remember when Squirrel Party was a well-known print?

First of all – what is Bodyline? It’s a costume and lolita store, with physical shops in Japan and an online store. It used to be owned by a comically unsavoury character called Mr Yan, but I believe the company is now owned by someone else. Both Mr Yan and the costume section  of the store were sometimes off putting aspects of the company, along with variable garment quality, occasional replicas, and generally cheaper construction and materials. Bodyline has never been “brand” in the lolita sense. But they’ve always been around, with ads in old edition of the GLB and now with a cute
Instagram account.

As I said, back when I started Bodyline was a solid presence in the Western lolita scene. With an easy to buy from website and often free shipping, compared to the sometimes complicated brand websites and costly EMS shipping, it made a lot of sense to buy from there. Bodyline had shoes and blouses in a rainbow spectrum, and lots of different skirts and dresses to choose from. When I came into the scene, Bodyline was over their direct replica stage (though they still put out heavily inspired clothing), and produced a wide range of things. Quite a few were questionable in design but most were solid pieces that could be coordinated well. And for me, at least, buying a dress that lacked the finer details and nice materials of a brand dress for a fraction of the cost was always worth it.

I’ve always been a fan of Bodyline. My first lolita purchases were two dresses off eBay but my second was a giant haul from Bodyline – most of that was sold off a long time ago but I still have one of the skirts from that haul, and some of the shoes. Even now, seven of thirty one of my main pieces are from Bodyline – 21% of my total main pieces.

Some of my Bodyline dresses ^__^

But what I’ve come to realise gradually over the last few years is that we just don’t talk about Bodyline any more. It’s not a thing. Part of that may be because they’re not really coming out with much new lolita stuff, definitely nowhere near as much as they did at their peak. People still wear Bodyline, a little, but it certainly is nowhere near as prevalent as it was and that makes me wonder if it’s still a part of the lolita subculture, and if not, what it is.

Let’s be realistic – with everything becoming more accessible (even if brand-new brand is still not what I’d call affordable) Bodyline no longer is the go-to cheap store for this fashion. Even I wouldn’t tell a new lolita to buy from Bodyline as their first port of call these days when it’s only a little tricker to order from Taobao – the sheer variety available on Taobao blows Bodyline away.

So I think that as lolita fashion marches onwards to a new decade, Bodyline will be left to the 2010s. Not that it will cease to exist – I think that big red store will loom over Takeshita Dori for many years yet with an online presence to match. I certainly will buy from them again if the release something new that suits my wardrobe! But I feel that, like EGL on Livejournal and print magazines, Bodyline is no longer a pillar of our subculture like it once was. And even though change like that is inevitable, the decline of Bodyline almost makes me as sad as when GLB ceased printing – it marks an irrevocable change and the lolita that existed when I started no longer exists.

Thursday, 23 May 2019

Review #51: Lady Sloth Summer Bolero

Literally the day that we left for Tokyo a package arrived in my mailbox - a new chiffon bolero from Lady Sloth. I tucked it away until I came back and now, finally, I've taken photos (though they are both few and terrible, my apologies for that) and can post my review!

As usual, a little backstory. In January Lady Sloth announced a sale on Instagram and I got excited. I had wanted a new short sleeved brown bolero as my handmade one is getting a bit worn, but hadn't managed to find anything. So I figured this was my chance!

However, as I placed my order I realised that only the regular size, not the 100cm+ bust size was discounted. I decided to go ahead with the order anyway, but was disappointed that the bolero was advertised as being on sale but that it wasn't across all the sizes. I mean, I could have contacted Lady Sloth and they may have sorted something out or clarified their advertising, but honestly I couldn't be bothered!

The item was listed as having a 2-6 week handling time, and overall it took about 10 weeks for my bolero to reach me. I ordered January 29 and it arrived April 8. Between that and the pricing thing I was not entirely happy with the ordering experience, but also not overly put out. I tend to be pretty chill in that regard!

Once I got back from Tokyo and got around to opening the package, I was pleased. Lady Sloth seem to have upped their packaging since I last bought from them, as there was a cute sticker on the package and postcards inside.

And as for the bolero itself? It's pretty, well made, a lovely shade of chocolate brown, and exactly what I ordered. As it's a fairly basic piece I'm not excited about it, but it's something my wardrobe needed and I'm glad that I got it. The only negative is that it sits a little oddly across my bust, but I think that may be because I'm a little taller than average and didn't specify my height when providing measurements. Overall I'm quite happy with the bolero and can recommend Lady Sloth for blouses and boleros in the colours you need, but may be having trouble finding.

Sunday, 19 May 2019

Catching up

So once again I've gone on a semi-hiatus and have fallen off the blogging map for the past couple of months. As usual, I wanted to just post a little personal update to let you know why.

First of all...Tokyo trip! In April James and I spent a wonderful (if exhausting) week in Tokyo, which I will totally be blogging about. After that, things were very full on with the Love Live group I was in, which was great but exhausting.

And yes, you read the past tense right - I have left the group. The leader proved herself to not be someone I could allow to lead me, so I left and things got very cold, very fast. Along with a few other personal things going on I really got thrown off track for a while. I'm not giving up on either dancing or cosplay, because I really love both but things were emotional for me for a while there.

But now I'm getting settled again and I’m really looking forward to blogging more! I had big plans for changing my life for the better and working towards my goals in 2019 and that got a bit muddied, but now I’m hitting that with renewed optimism (though not with renewed energy just yet – I’m mentally exhausted right now).

I know that no-one probably notices too much that I hadn’t been posting regularly lately, but I still like to post these little personal updates once in a while.

Also, I’m going to take this as an opportunity for some shameless self-promotion. Two of my goals for this year are to be able to develop my income streams from writing and modelling. So to that end I’d really appreciate it if you read, shared, and applauded my articles on and possibly also liked my modelling/cosplay page on Facebook. I do have some lolita content planned for both platforms so it’s not going to be entirely against the interests that brought you to this blog in the first place!

But anyway, I’m back at it and hopefully can stay on course because I really miss this blog!

Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Coordinates from March - April 2019

As if the universe wanted to force balance to my lolita life, April and March were somewhat lolita-heavy months as opposed to January's two coords and February's zero. Yay for pretty clothes!

First up I (surprise, surprise) wore lolita to go to the movies with James, this time to watch Captain Marvel (which I loved BTW). This was shortly after I'd posted an entry in my Around Your Wardrobe in 30 Coordinates which featured a black, white and lavender coordinate and, well, you can see where I got the inspiration from!

Skirt: Wonderpunk Jurassic Party
Cutsew & Bag: Angelic Pretty
Everything else: Offbrand/Taobao

I was really excited to finally wear Jurassic Party out, and I'm super happy that my coordinate challenge sparked the inspiration to wear it in this way. I felt super cute, and received many compliments from James and even one from a random man in the cinema. So it was a happy first outing for this print ^__^

James snapped a lot of cute photos for me so sharing this one too!

Next I wore another casual coord to go with James to get his hair done - back to a brilliant mohawk, this time in blue and pink with a cyber pattern shaved into the side. He pulls off awesome hair so well, it always makes me want to book something equally as wow for me.

Skirt: Handmade
Cutsew: Angelic Pretty
Shoes: Bodyline
Everything else: Offbrand

I know, I know, I wore the same cutsew two outfits in a row but that's because it's the most awesome thing ever! Totally need more tops in this style!

After that I intended to wear lolita for the second day of Madman Anime Festival in Sydney since life had plans for me other than finishing day two cosplays for James and I...but I forgot my petticoat! Oh well ^__^

I did, however, bust out a lolita coordinate to take my mother in law out for dinner for her 75th birthday. I really liked this outfit, and she seemed to as well, so I was happy. My shoes died though...the front bows came off as I put them on and the suede started coming away from the heels as the night went on. But they had a good final outfit at least!

JSK: Metamorphose temps de fille Rose Stripe Shirring Pinafore JSK
Bolero & Bag: Baby, the Stars Shine Bright
Everything else: Offbrand/Taobao

And then...the Tokyo coordinates! I had packed three lolita coords, but in the end decided against wearing lolita to Tokyo Disneyland which turned out to be a great decision.

First of all, I wore lolita on our first full day in Japan, which was also the first time we visited Harajuku! Unfortunately it was a rainy day so the photoshoot we intended to also do didn't end up happening, but it was still a great experience to wear lolita while walking down Takeshita Dori for the first time.

JSK & Headbow: Metamorphose temps de fille Egg Art
Bolero: Heart E
Socks and Bag: Baby, the Stars Shine Bright
Shoes: Bodyline
Necklace & Bracelet: Angelic Pretty
Brooch: MadIllustration
Everything else: Offbrand/taobao

However, the W Heart C vintage store had a lovely photo corner, where James obliged in snapped some pics for me ^__^

And then I wore lolita again on Harajuku! On this day we met up with some Aussie friends and one of their Aussie friends to hit up Meiji Jingu and then the backstreets. We were an amazingly colourful bunch, and did photoshoots throughout the day. Check out James's Facebook page to see everything once he's done editing!

Skirt, Cutsew & Socks: Metamorphose temps de fille
Shoes: Bodyline
Headbow: Angelic Pretty
Everything else: Offbrand/taobao

I love the fact the unintentionally I wore a lot of Meta in Japan (my unworn outfit was Baby and AP). Repping my favourite brand y'all! And Patisserie Dream is so cute, I'm just loving that I got to wear it out in such a place and way.

BTW, if you wear lolita to Harajuku on a weekend...prepare to have your photo taken, often without asking. I mean, I wasn't the only interesting one in our group but James and I got asked for photos even when we were temporarily apart form the group so yeah, be prepared!

Colourful friends!

So that was my last two months in loltia coordinates! Things have been a little bit crazy lately, hence my less frequent posting, and I'll be posting a personal update shortly as well. But I see more free time in my future and therefore...more blogging!